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Holidays and traditions in Great Britain
Christmas Day is when Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus. Christmas is celebrated on the 25th of December. During the weeks before Christmas people send cards, watch nativity plays and go carol singing. They put up Christmas decorations inside and outside homes, churches, shops. The traditional Christmas decorations are evergreens, such as holly, mistletoe and ivy. This holiday is celebrated together with family, relatives and friends who share customs and traditions which have been around for centuries. People talk, eat, exchange presents, watch television and listen to the Queens Christmas message in the afternoon. A typical Christmas meal is roast turkey, or chicken, or goose, roast potatoes, Brussels sprouts or other vegetables and gravy.
Many people stay up until midnight on New Year’s Eve, the 31st of December, so that they can celebrate the start of the New Year. People see in the New Year with their friends and family. Many pubs and clubs have special events. A few minutes before midnight, British people traditionally watch Big Ben, and celebrate after it strikes for the 12th time. It’s a tradition to join hands at midnight and sing Auld Lang Sine, written by the Scottish poet Robert Burns. In London people often gather in Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus or Parliament Square. They listen to Big Ben and watch a 10-minute firework display at the London Eye starting at midnight.
In Scotland and in the north of England people follow the custom of the First Foot. The First Foot is traditionally a tall, dark-hared man, who is the first to knock at his friend’s house after midnight. He usually brings several gifts, including a coin, bread, salt, coal or a drink for good luck.
On New Year’s Day people make New Year’s resolutions. They promise to start doing something good in the New Year. They usually promise to give up smoking, to save money, to get a better job, to care about studies, to become more organized and so on.
Traditionally, forty-one days before Easter Sunday is a special day for Christians, called Pancake Day or Shrove Tuesday. It is the day before Lent starts. Eggs and milk ought not to be eaten during Lent. That’s why egg, milk and butter left in the house were used for pancakes. All over England there are pancake races on or near Shrove Tuesday. Each participant has to wear an apron and a hat or a scarf. They run with a pancake in a frying pan and throw the pancake in the air. They have to catch it in the pan. The winner gets to the finishing line first having thrown the pancake a pre-decided number of times. The most famous pancake race takes place at Olney.
Date: 2016-05-13; view: 684; Нарушение авторских прав